Ernest Goff

info courtesy of the Chateau St. Jean web page

In 1920, “The Chateau” was built as a summer home for Ernest and Maude Goff, and their children.

The family, originally from Saginaw, Michigan, made its fortune in iron mines there, and in lumber in the Pacific Northwest. The 250 acres of land now Chateau St. Jean vineyards were initially planted with white grapes. Prohibition curtailed grape growing, however, and the family opted to grow prunes and walnuts instead. A visit to Chateau St. Jean lifts all your senses. You can begin by exploring our magnificent gardens that will make any visitor feel transported and awaken your sense of smell. As you wind your way through the gardens your path will lead you to our Visitors Center. Once inside, your taste buds will delight in the wine country treasures from superb Sonoma County wines and gifts in the Retail Room to delicious gourmet foods at the Charcuterie. Across the courtyard, sits the Chateau that houses our Vineyard Room for those who would like to sample reserve wines.


  1. Gilbert Goff says:

    Maude is seated far left, Mary is standing next to her, Claude seated and wearing sailor outfit, Claudette seated and passed away young in upper southeast corner of home, Harry standing, Ezra seated on Ernest’s lap was my grandpa and lived behind the Kenwood Goff estate which is now Chateau St. Jean winery. Past owners since Maude’s death have filled in the swimming pool that was dug by miles, filled in the small ponds configured to the five Great Lakes and burned down derelict two story house behind estate house which was believed to be one of Guadalupe Vallejo’s rancho houses for that region. Santa Rosa city now occupies the cattle grazing sites as well as boneyard just north of Canyon Drive approximately 400 yards. Gilbert Bryant Goff Jr. 2023

    Liked by 1 person

  2. szterrell says:

    Hello cousin! Thanks for stopping by and giving us an update. It’s too bad about all the “improvements” made that erased history ;-(


    1. Gil Goff says:

      Hola’ Yes but at least the main house is still standing. They removed those items due to insurance requirements. The swimming pool was dug by “mules” not “miles” as autocorrect would prefer. Neat history now but was nice to experience first hand and lived it a bit. Robert Goff my uncle is still alive in Hope Idaho and has copious info more so than I. The Bear flag revolt history prior to our settling in Sonoma Valley (The Valley of the Moon) is a really interesting event and all that area was owned by Vallejo and was his rancho. Thinking he owned a quantity of acres a dare not repeat since I lack accuracy but it was massive

      Liked by 1 person

      1. szterrell says:

        Does Uncle Robert do email … I’d love to chat with him!!


      2. szterrell says:

        Gil I deleted your uncle’s address after I copied it … I thought it best we keep it private, but I hope to contact him by mail soon and touch base. Thanks for passing it along!


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